5 Simple Ways To Enhance Your Yoga Experience
Yoga has become a very popular activity, and for good reason. It helps increase flexibility, stamina, and strength while also promoting relaxation and reducing stress levels. Plus, it’s accessible, so virtually anyone can take advantage of its many benefits. Classes are no longer limited to exclusive yoga studios, either. They are part of the class schedule at most gyms and community centers, and there are a nearly endless number of videos available online that you can follow along with from the comfort of your own home.
With more people exposed to yoga and enjoying its benefits, there is also a growing number of people looking to deepen their yoga experience.
SEE ALSO: How To Choose The Right Type Of Yoga
1) Be consistent with your practice
One way to really grow as a yogi is to practice regularly. That can mean a number of things depending on your existing schedule. You might be able to fit yoga in three days a week, or maybe you can carve 30 minutes out of each day to make it a daily habit. Regardless of how much time you have for your yoga practice, stay consistent with it. When you start and stop while learning something new, your body has to relearn the skills it just acquired. That means mastery can take substantially longer to achieve. Find a schedule that works for you and stick with it for the best results.
2) Integrate yoga into the rest of your life
Yoga doesn’t end when you roll up your mat. It’s built on an entire life system that values the uniqueness and spirit of all things. Integrating basic philosophies of yoga into your everyday life will help motivate you to continue practicing and building on what you have already learned. If you haven’t had a chance to learn directly from an experienced yogi, now is a great time to get started. Take a class, attend seminars, visit a retreat center or just read a few books about the lifestyle. Chances are your entire outlook will be affected, and you’ll see that play out in relationships and experiences.
3) Build on your existing knowledge
While you are learning about the lifestyle, work to delve deeper into the body of knowledge you have already acquired. Hone your physical skills by focusing on posture and alignment as you move through different poses. Simple little tweaks and adjustments can make a huge difference in how you experience movements and postures. Remember that even the most accomplished yogis get sloppy in their form sometimes, so you can relax in the knowledge that it can happen to anyone.
4) Return to your breath
Take time in each session to really focus on your breathing. The breath is a cornerstone of all yoga practice. It is what fuels your movement. Learn a few simple breath meditations and integrate them into the start of your yoga practice to bring awareness to your breath. If you want to stay specific to yoga, learn a few basic pranayama techniques for beginners. Then, over time you can start experimenting with different, more involved breathing exercises that will really help grow your overall yoga practice.
5) Carve out a sacred space
Yoga is about honoring the sacred that is present in every living thing, including you. To honor that, carve out a special place for your yoga practice. You don’t need a dedicated room or studio, but where you choose to practice can really impact how much benefit you get out of it. Focus on lighting, colors and temperature to set the stage. It also helps to find a location that limits outside noises and distractions to promote relaxation and focus.
How far you take your yoga practice is completely up to you. Incorporating principles into daily life, making practice part of your routine and growing your knowledge of things like alignment and breathing techniques can really help you take it to the next level.
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